Digvijay Singh, who has studied both at Baroda’s Faculty of Fine Arts and the National Institute of Design (NID), came into the spotlight when his clothes were seen at Lakme Fashion Week in 2008-09. Since then, his clothes—both for his own brand and the eco-friendly fashion label Bhu:Sattva—have became regulars at all style dos. Last year, he teamed up with his brother, Dhruv—who studied accessory design at NID and focuses on jewellery —to start the Digvijay Singh & Dhruv Singh Studio in Ahmedabad and a signature fashion jewellery and clothing boutique, called The Baroda Store, in Vadodara.
Says Digvijay: “I do clothing for both men and women, mainly in the Indo-west and traditional formals category. While most designers are known for women’s clothing, I have a strong line in men’s wear, especially for jodhpurs, achkans and shervanis. Also unlike many designers who use a lot of surface embellishment, my clothing is simple, but elegant and well-fitted.”
While the designer does supply clothes to fashion stores across the country, bespoke is his forte. “I started my studio in Ahmedabad so that patrons could see my work and order custom-fitted clothing as per their personal preference.’’
Talking about the Ahmedabad Studio, Dhruv says: “We share not just the infrastructure but also the customer interaction. By working together, we can cater to different members of a family or couples who are looking for fashion clothing and/or jewellery. While we do not consciously try and provide a package, we do have something for everyone.” He adds: “Digvijay is big on menswear and my jewellery is entirely for women.We focus on offering products for a similar client profile and not on providing solutions for an outfit with accessories.’’
Dhruv‘s jewellery uses semi-precious stones, gold plating and pearls, and has a contemporary or futuristic look. “I do not follow trends, but my own style and sense of elegance,’’ he explains. “Sometimes I take up a theme. For instance, I have created pieces that take inspiration from bicycle chains.’’
While the Ahmedabad Studio focuses on creating customized experiences, The Baroda Store focuses on retail. One followed the other quite organically. Explains Digvijay: “At our studio in Ahmedabad, we found that a significant number of clients were coming from Vadodara to get custom-fitted clothing or to buy from our collection. So we began to consider the possibility of opening stores in Vadodara and other cities.’’
The Baroda Store came to life courtesy Shashwath Jayakumar. “I started The Baroda Store in the Alkapuri neighbourhood of Vadodara, near some large retail complexes. Digvijay’s clothing and Dhruv’s lifestyle accessories make a perfect combination for fashion-conscious buyers as they can get designer clothing for men or women, and contemporary jewellery for women, at the same address. From clothing to footwear to jewellery, we decided to provide one luxury retail centre where they could find everything. We also have a studio where they can meet the designers by prior appointment for bespoke jewellery and clothing; the two brothers regularly visit Vadodara. Though the store was inaugurated only in June 2013, it has already attracted the patronage of a well-heeled clientele,” explains Jayakumar, who is in the manufacturing business.
Buoyed by the success of The Baroda Store, the brothers are now looking at opening stores in more cities. “A signature store at Ahmedabad will open soon, and then we will look at other cities with a market for exclusive designer products,” says Digvijay.